Auditory Venture Is It Worth It

14 Jun

Over the years, I have listened to many hours, I mean many hours, of audio recordings. I’ve heard quite a variety, as well, from physical medicine to philosophy, from paranormal activity, to holistic healing, from historical events to political dogma, from time management to social and personal relationship; I even listened for pure entertainment to the odd novel. The audio list which is available today, some might say is near endless, and growing at a faster pace than it has ever before. I think no matter what you listen to, most of them can and likely will have some influence on your perception of what we are, physically or how we as humans behave socially. I think even in any novel’s story, there is some aspect of human behavior which is alluded to or highlighted in the story line.
Suffice it to say that I have NOT searched for the human bizarre, as I believe “that” to be a sad state of affairs which I do not care to acknowledge, or devote any of my time to.
I have always looked to find subjects matter which offered me at least a “slight” degree of personal interest, or an incite into human behavior.

Certainly for me, using audio files I found it much easier to explore material that I know I never would have read, in book format; but having listened to that material now, I am happier to have explored it. Some of my own fringe material however, certainly not all, but some, I have listened to several times. Nonetheless, even though I enjoyed the material, I know I still would not read the book. Why not you say? Well maybe because as an audio file I feel as if someone is talking to “me”, telling me about something or someone. I guess researchers would term me an auditory learner. I do often repeat things to myself when I am learning new material. Hearing someone else say it out loud in my ear I guess achieves that part of me which requires it. Perhaps another reason is because I normally listen to my material when I am alone. Reading text, to me requires concentration, and limits my movements; I typically need to be sitting down to do it. Maybe as many would attest I tend to be restless and always need to be doing something. Listening to an audio file means I can do other non-critical things, like walking, yet still absorb ideological content. I have found audio material to be excellent company when you are on a long drive by yourself or just spending time alone.
One audio area that I have concentrated on over the years would be classified as “self-improvement” material. I think they are by far the most numerous in my collection of some twenty five to thirty Giga bites. Am I better for it? I believe that I am but I suspect that I might be a bit biased also. People who have known me over the years may, have a different answer than my own.
What I CAN say, is that within me, I do feel better about myself. The world and life still holds mysteries, which I hope to explore, and hardships which I hope to overcome as well. I have gained confidence which has allowed me to even start a blog, as well as other writings which are not things I would have risked or considered, several years ago.
Having listened to a good quantity of material and I think many that I have searched out for one reason or another appear to be older material. Items written back in the earlier mid-20th century. That seems to have attracted my attention more so than the new age programs you see and hear on infomercials or the web of today.
Many of today’s speakers that I have spot listened to I find pretty consistently, say pretty much the same thing as the older material that I have. For sure new age speakers, each try to put their own spin on the rhetoric, trying to make it sound like they have just discovered or invented it on their own, but you know, since I have listened to so many audio files now, I would suggest that the new eschew the lessons from old. Masters like Napoleon Hill, Dale Carnegie, and Earl Nightingale. Perhaps those individuals from the past, also took their cues from older masters as well, I don’t know. But the important thing for me I guess is that the lessons appear to hold true no matter when in history they were written or spoken. I guess for me that, in itself gives the material a strong degree of truth. Our present and our futures are built from the past. Someday check out quotes on line for things people say today. Likely you will find that it might have first been uttered in the Roman era, or the Greeks and many others long since dead; like Aesop’s fables. Things can be modernized but the lesson and formulas appear to remain the same and true.
What started my own Audio Venture was perhaps 15 years ago on a Sunday morning flea market traipsing. I came across a plastic case, in good condition, with a picture on the cover of a white haired older gentleman, clean looking as most of them are, with the Title “You were Born Rich” by Bob Proctor. Well I thought, “I always would enjoy having more money” then I thought “Ha… bet you it’s all about being rich in life or has some religious connotation, he looks a bit like a preacher.” Inside were six or eight cassettes, each with its own title printed. I believe the seller had four dollars written on it, with a publisher price of perhaps sixty five dollars, don’t recall for sure. I don’t even think I tried to talk him down, which is very unusual for me.
Anyway I remember thinking, “can’t be that good, or about financial gains, if this person is here selling it, and so cheaply. He certainly does not look rich, or maybe he just never learned the lessons,” I chuckled to myself for the thought. Needless to say I made the purchase.
I travel a lot so time to myself, is often not in short supply. Well, to make a long story short I found the tapes absolutely brilliant. I loved the message and his voice delivery was excellent for me. I like to think that I am my own thinking man, so for sure there were some passages which might have raised my eyebrows some, upon reflection, but all and all I thought the material well worth the time to listen. The message was in essence (in a small nut shell) you can gain financially and morally without feeling guilty and be a better person for it.
When I came home that trip I invested in four small handheld tape cassette players, blank tapes and carrying bags to hold it all together. The MP3 market was not really the develop industry that it is today. “I know copyright infringement.” Well it is what it is; I was more interested in getting the message to my children. I honestly do not believe that any of them EVER listened to them however. The lawyers can chastise me for doing the act, but fate has reduced it to a meaningless function. Every time I queried my kids about it, there was always some excuse as to why they had not listened to it yet.
I am positive that today, (though that was many years ago) none of them could tell me what happened to the kits I made for them,…. even if their life depended on it. Another proof that you can bring a horse to water but the horse MUST drink for him or herself. (need political correctness these days)
For me, my life study in the audio self-help arena had kicked off in earnest. Bob introduced me to names and ideas I had never heard of before as he introduced source material for himself, like Napoleon Hill, Earl Nightingale, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Russell Conwell, and an absolute favorite of mine, “The Richest Man in Babylon by George S Clason; information I, believe everyone and especially young people, should be made to read or listen to that one, if none other.
These are but a few of the names which I have since researched and listened to. Most, several times over, some many times over, and every time I found a new insight or understanding. I have carried all of them with me on every trip from that day forward. I believe it has help me to broaden my views from financial facts to commerce history, and market predictions, from political views, to social injustices, from medical revelations to psychic beliefs, from religious societies, to belief in the Divine, from human relationship, to human tragedy and comedy. The spectrum is virtually limitless and growing by leaps and bounds every day.
One interesting point which I have also found is that there are websites like “Learn Out Loud”. Another is “Librivox” which create audio files from old, no longer in print material and it’s free to the public. It is of course of different quality than what is available on the commercial market since Librivox recruit the help of people like you and me to read the material and upload it.
All these tapes which I have purchased over the years and a good majority in second hand book stores have accumulated to a sizable physical mass. You could put them on a book shelf as you would any other book but there is a better solution. In my travels I am limited in carrying weight so all of the material had to be converted into an MP3 format which can now all fit nicely onto one small SD chip.
Once you are done with those bulky CDs, tapes, and records, I suggest donating them to the Institute for the blind, in your area. Perhaps more than anyone else they can appreciate the spoken word. I am pretty sure that many, a blind person shares similar interest to you.
My initial reason for this article was to discuss “Core Beliefs” but having talked about my audio adventures I think has and continues to influence my own core beliefs. At least I hope that they do, and in a positive way.
Many of the self-improvement audio will spell out formulas, and try to make you believe that if you follow it to the letter you will be rich, or famous, or healthy beyond your dreams. I think that “in essence” all of it bears some grains of truth. The hard part I think is in the BELIEF. For it all to work it’s more than just mantras that you might use to convince yourself that you are a true believer. But belief in itself is more than knowing or a thought…… and with that I will conclude with words from

Mahatma Gandhi

“Your beliefs becomes your thoughts
Your thoughts become your words
Your words become your actions
Your actions become your habits
Your habits become your values
Your values become your DESTINY”

To summarize…..
what your core beliefs are you will become…..

Technology Addiction? or is it incomprehension?

19 May

Not so long ago I made a purchase at one of the local stores. As I was looking at the teller’s machine for the card insertion point, so that it could read the “chip” on my card, the attendant serving me, a young girl perhaps in her late teens, exclaimed….” Oh you don’t need to do that, you have one of the new cards,… here, just tap the card”…In my stupor trying to understand what she had just said I looked at her. She just as quickly grabbed my card and “tapped” it to the screen. Immediately the machine responded with its whirring sound and spit out the paper receipt which indicated that the sale was now complete.
As she looked at me with a smirk on her face, no doubt because of my own dumb looking expression trying to grasp what had just happened, I exclaimed ….. “but I did not enter my code to accept the purchase”. With a continued girlish giggle she exclaimed with no more of a what to do than…”oh you don’t have to, your card has the tap feature. See this little icon in the corner,” a small transmit signal strength display, “that means you can just tap the card.”
She continued to look at me with that youthful grin, no doubt proud of herself that she had once more educated some old ignorant geezer of the new way of shopping. Of which she appeared to be much more cognizant and comfortable of the process than I am.
Well, in my defense, I would not exactly call myself an “old ignorant geezer” but I am for sure old enough to be her grandfather. I grabbed my purchase and left the counter, mind wheeling and wondering about this new card feature.
The transaction certainly was a new one on me. I had not heard of the new card characteristic now making its way into the market place. I suppose in that sense I was technologically ignorant. Now I do travel a lot globally, and often see banking card features overseas before I see them here in North America. This tap feature however was a new one on me, but not one that I would quickly accept at face value. This merited further investigation for sure. I set out to discover just exactly what this “TAP” feature is. I asked various vendors as well as my banking establishment. As they all explained to me that the new cards now transmit a signal that the vendors can read and seamlessly complete the purchase transaction. No numbers to forget. Naturally,I exclaimed that if it can do this without my entering any secret pin number, then “ANYBODY” with my card can make their own transaction, using my card, and this could happen without my ever knowing it.
I must be the stupid one because both vendors and banking tellers quickly and without any alarm iterated that …. “of course that could happen but the bank limits the amount to some small pre-determine value that you determine. As well some merchants reduce that amount, even more”… As well the banking tellers always iterated that if you should lose your card the need to alert the bank “AS SOON” as you are aware that your card is missing. Doing further research on the web I see much text from the financial institution repeating that the burden is on me to guard my card AND alert the bank quickly, blah blah….the legalese jargon is too long to point everything here but makes for an interesting read on how they develop slumped shoulders.
Well I don’t know about getting with the times, but I think this is inherently wrong. For sure it has a certain degree of speed and convenience, which the marketing departments are quick to outline for you. They are however much slower to indicate the potential liabilities that it also gives the thieves of this world Cart Blanche to shadow you.
Now I agree that I am not technologically the most savvy and I know that out there, are hackers, or just plain seedy people which are way more advanced than I am, and FAR less scrupulous than myself. Let’s look briefly at these transmitting cards for a moment. If I can buy online an attachment for my phone which lets me scan credit cards, then I am sure that somewhere is also available a tap reader, whether on open market or the seedy alleys. What is the transmit distance of these cards? Likely not far, but it does not matter, I am sure that the seedy engineers of this world can create signal enhancers to increase whatever signal emitted. Once upon a time a pick pocket had to physically touch you to extract $10 or $20 dollars from my pocket. Now he just needs to scan me. Once he has my code and he is smart he will not empty my account. Taking a random few dollars here from various people could render someone a good wages,….TAX free. How long before any of us ever notice that a ten dollar coffee charge was not done by ourselves. Does anyone EVER check, absolutely every charge printed on their bank account? Carrying this thought a bit further if one can find a card reader why not a card creator. My card certainly was created by a machine. Now potentially two of my cards “could” exist. Which vendor would ever raise a suspicious eyebrow because a transaction did not go through? After all it’s for such a small amount, as stated earlier. Any thief could easily and believably shrug off the inconvenience and just pull out a different card or pay cash, since the tap card will equally work at the ATM. When I spoke to one of my banking person I expressed that this feature HAS TO BE youth driven. I was told then that no older people wanted the new cards too. Perhaps, but I am sure older people are the minority. I for one cannot believe that we are in such a rush that we cannot spend an extra thirty seconds max, to enter a four digit code.
I believe that our younger to middle aged people are so technology driven that they are blind to the potential hazards. I also believe that the banks are showing a certain degree of irresponsibility in providing it just because people want it. Is the market such that the fear of “ if we don’t provide it, someone else will and we lose all those transactions revenue.”
I often thought of trying to do the math on how many ATM transaction any bank does in the run of a day. At one to three dollars a pop, for bank visiting users I am sure it would scare most people, more automation and less people.
No, I am sorry, but for me, I have requested the feature to be TURNED OFF at my banking institution. I will depend a bit longer on my stupid four digit code, and follow the bank’s instruction: “always guard and protect your pin”.
What if I forget my pin you say? Well I guess I will do without my coffee today and visit my nearest branch to get my numbers or a NEW one re-initiated. At least if I “drop” my card on the floor, nobody can pick it up and buy their coffee from MY pocket, much less slowly and unexpectedly bleed me for months or possibly years when I get a new card.

Experience keeps a dear school, yet fools will learn in no other.
Benjamin Franklin

It was a Blast

3 Dec

My youngest son has been working as an audio engineer for a little over a year now. Recently a studio hired him to be the audio engineer for a product advertisement for a major retail store head quartered in Toronto Ontario Canada. In the hiring process, it seems that the producers were a bit shy on real life people to film while using their new tool line.
They asked my son if anyone around him would mind trying out the tools and willing to be filmed doing it. Of course, there would be some required questions pertaining to the tools themselves while speaking on camera. As my sons and I are constantly renovating, and using tools are not really in short supply, he tentatively volunteered me to be one of their candidates.
Of course talking at length has never been an issue for me so when my son approached me, I was only too glad to oblige. The fact that it was a good paying job for him only made it that much more satisfying. The opportunity to work with him professionally in his new career was equally most satisfying.
The filming day started around ten am with my outlining for the producers, the jobs that I had lined up, which could best demonstrate their tools. The camera and audio equipment was set up, and ready to roll. My son outfitted me with an additional body microphone, not that I have a soft voice by any means.
They directed me from which angle they would be filming and what they expected me to do. I executed each task as needed. A question period then followed to describe my opinions for the tool’s performance. With what I thought was only a few retakes, to make sure they had enough footage and dialog to cut and splice as needed later, we moved on to the next task.
By five o’clock, we completed as many task as possible and all the equipment was broken down in the unmistakable fashion of the movie industry, quickly. Everybody appeared pleased with my performance but you know show biz……”Oh we loved you” ……”you did great” …. “Of course we will call you later” ……only never to be heard from again. Ha ha ha
Well no matter. I hope that they do call but frankly, I won’t wait by the phone or lose sleep over it. Certainly I won’t be quitting my day job just yet…..ha ha ha, Never mind starting to look for an agent, even funnier.
All and all it was a memorable day, which I hope can be repeated again some time. Oh, they did eventually call, well in today’s format, it was an email. It wasn’t to offer me a contract, tears running down my cheeks, but to give me the link where I could view my performance.
Hit the play button and judge for yourself how I did.

Senators What Good Are They?

26 Oct

For quite some time now, we in Canada have been subjected to bickering within the Parliamentary House of Commons about questionable expenditures for some senators …..
Anyone who has a job, with expense reports, KNOWS that many, expenditures, become questionable and subject to interpretation. It is always resolved with a quick nod from some superior, yay or nay, final. This issue for “me” whether the expense in question, is legitimate or not is of no real consequence.
I offer to my fellow Canadians that the question that the opposition SHOULD be asking and debating is the whole Senate expense. Of course, we have no fears that this issue will ever be tabled since most Canadians already know that the Senate is NOTHING more than a retirement home for party faithful. It does not really matter which political party is in power since one of the first functions they do, once elected, is to fill whatever vacant seats available with one of their own cronies. Of course, seat availability only comes upon a previous member’s death. Therefore, to hope that our parliamentarians will ever discuss the abolition of the Senate is not likely since it forms in truth part of their retirement package.
It is not like as Senators; they ever have to report to work to be paid, so in that view what is the difference if we pay for questionable logging expense for Senators. We are paying for Senators who have not reported to work, may as well pay for logging that they did not use. Amazingly, NO one in Parliament is questioning his or her absence. They do not even have to use up a sick day, or vacation day, personal family day or anything; they just do not need to be there. What about that? THAT tells me that they DO nothing, period end of sentence.
I am always amazed at how the opposition stand up in the House of Commons and put banal questions to the Premier or other Parliamentarians who sit across from them with a straight face as if they have asked a question with life changing consequences. It really is too bad that our system is structured in such a way that the opposition, which is supposed to perform a job, to ensure that the elected government stays on track, but in actuality they are only there trying to “get” a job.
If we did away with party lines and let each elected official stand on his or her own merit perhaps, our country could achieve some form of greatness. Then maybe each member could bring forward novel ideas on how to best run our country without being forced to keep mum for fear that someone other than the leading party provides the required forward movement. Or that everybody must be subjected to endless benign questions on who came in late and or who did not pay their share of the lunch ticket.
Any Canadian looking in on our elected officials on CPAC has to be totally, embarrassed with the performance. I know I am. I see them pounding on their desk hooting and hollering at one another, creating whatever kind of disturbance they can, to drown out anything said that they do not agree with. If they were children, even though they behave like children, no one ever gives them a time out or ask them to vacate the room until they grow up and learn how to behave. If ANY one of us did what I see in Parliament, at our place of employment, I know I would find myself in the unemployment line looking for a new job. Not to mention the sore butt from the boot that got me out the door.
Our government should be there to stimulate our economy, protect our borders, and educate our populous. They should be there to assist us all to achieve new heights, not create red tape to hamper new ideas. We are in a global economy where speed of action makes the difference between a successful endeavor and a stagnant pool. Instead, we waste our energy bickering about who got the bigger piece of pie, or who is mommy and daddy’s favorite. In the meantime, the rest of the planet looks on eating that pie.
The present Senate goings on, to me, only proves that it is time to rid ourselves of the deadwood. Let us forget whether the accommodation expense was legitimate or not. Sign the expense form, pay the bill, then let us make sure that it NEVER happens again.
The only SURE way to ensure that, is to ELIMINATE the “SENATE expense”….Lord knows we have been paying THAT expense without question, and that, since its creation. The sad part is we never receive any return on our investment for it.
Any business savvy person would tell you …….. CUT IT LOOSE.

When did we loose OUR Responsibility?

23 Oct

A few days ago I was out working with the assistance of my two sons. Having put in a full day replacing a rather large living room picture window I took the two of them to a local truck stop to get them something to eat on our way home.
Similar to many areas at this time of year the establishment was undergoing some changes, which required major roadside upgrade as well. After some missed turns due to regular entry road blocks, from the construction, we found the new entry point and made our way to a convenient parking spot.
As we negotiated the new entry, we noticed a group of people gathered around one individual on the ground in the middle of the road just a little further from where we entered. Of course, our attention was, focused on the gathering and we determined that somehow a motorcyclist had met with some demise. We could not see that any other vehicle seemed to be involved with the mishap, whatever it was.
Everything certainly seemed to be well in hand and no one seemed to be frantically running around trying to martial any kind of assistance. No official vehicles, of any kind was yet visible but with the calmness that seemed to prevail around the group we determined that everything was well in hand. So we continued on our trek to the restaurant section.
Once inside we could easily overhear the buzz between the restaurant servers. It seemed that some, woman, on a motorcycle had taken a fall upon exiting the parking lot. A local resident nurse happen to be in the restaurant at the time of the incident and she was on the scene to lend whatever services she could while they awaited the 911 response team.
Now what strikes me as a jurisdictional nonsense is that it appeared that the federal RCMP police station which was only literally maybe 1500 feet away and the fire station perhaps only another ¼ mile further with paramedics could not respond to the 911 call as the establishment rest on the very edge of the county line. As a result, the group needed to wait for the support resources located perhaps some eight to ten miles in the opposite direction.
Well naturally all three of us shook our heads in disgust and once again accepted the governmental jurisdictional disorganization and red tape nonsense. We three get into these, discussion quite often as you might guess. We completed our meal with a continued bantering on government issues and proceeded to return to our vehicle. Naturally, one of the boys needed to use the facilities before hitting the road so myself and my other son, continued to the truck to await his return.
He returned to the truck but not without further information from the traffic mishap. It seemed that while he was at the counter getting some desert chocolate bars for all of us, the police who had now been on the scene was finalizing his report inside. He was apparently issuing a citation to the manager as responsible agent for the motorcycle incident, which had occurred moments before as the lady was exiting his property on her motorcycle. She had lost control and caused herself an unpleasant incident. No medical details had been overheard.
It seems that the manager had failed to provide a “sign” to indicate that caution was required, due to uneven road surfaces. It was, pointed out that, there was a sign visible coming “into” the property but, no sign was provided for the exiting public.
Now I ask you, at what point does anyone looses their faculty so as to be unaware that the road exiting a property is likely to be any less bumpy or under construction than at the time that they entered only some short time prior. It is the same patch of ground that must be used to come in as it is to exit. There is no divisional barrier between entry and exit. Just one patch, of dirt, maybe fifty feet across services both vehicles entering and exiting the premises. The place is under construction people. The work did not get completed within the hour or two that this driver was on the property. That of course is assuming that they did not just get gas for their bike, but also purchased food as well.
Why, is it the manager’s responsibility, that this, women fell? Could it be that the motorbike, is perhaps too large for this particular women? Where is her responsibility to “see” or be aware that construction is ongoing and that perhaps she needed to handle her balancing act a little more precariously for the environment. She had to be aware of the construction when she drove in! Can it be that perhaps, she had been riding too long, and might have been too tired to manhandle the rather large bike, on the loose gravel? Nor is my irritation because I dislike motorbike; I used to drive one myself.
No, I suggest to you that a citation issued to management is nothing more than lawyer driven regulations which serves only to remove our individual responsibilities and allows it to be borne by anyone one but ourselves. The woman in this case, lost control of her bike, end of sentence. How experienced is she? Maybe she should not be driving one at all. Even if a sign, had been raised and whether visible from the exit or not, the outcome would have been the same. Why, are the police chastising the manager and the establishment? Don’t get me wrong. I am definitely not against the police officer. I respect their work and certainly do not envy their task. They can only enforce the law as it is written.
More and more no matter what the incident or the situations people no longer feel that they need to be responsible for their action. We always want to lay blame on someone else for not protecting us. It seems to me that people no longer feel the need to look out for their own safety and society is helping them to morally, absolve them.

eReaders Cases

26 May

Well I have not been as diligent in writing in my blog as I had hoped to be at the start of the New Year. However, I am working on some other writing projects which I prefer to keep to myself, for now. I am presently in Brasil working out at sea, so for those that think ooh la la…Brasil don’t I wish I could go there……
Well I wish you all could visit the country as well. What I have seen of the country, which is very little, I find very lovely and the people quite accommodating. I still would love to see the Amazon River and tropical forest. Maybe someday, that will happen for me! Unless you speak Portuguese that can be a bit of a barrier but if you have some adventurous blood in you, it is manageable. Make a game of it and try to learn a word a day. I suppose that may be more applicable to people such as myself since I can spend months here working with the Brasilians, both onshore and out at sea.
For you perhaps a few classes in Portuguese would not be too far wrong either. Many of the businesses have English, speaking people at the counters. Certainly, in the major cities, this is true but further out is a different story. There is a large movement for kids or people to learn English. The country realizes that in a developmental situation the world is much more accommodating if you can speak English and this they advertise on large billboards “that with good English you will get a better job.”
Anyway, today was not really to talk about Brasil but I wanted to post something that I have already spoken about and a link can be found in my earlier postings. My eBook reader case has proven very successful in keeping my reader safe from damage while travelling and at work. It has also, as I suspected would happen, confused everyone in thinking that it is just a book when it is on the desk. They have ALL been surprised when I open it and out come an electronic eReader.
Many have expressed a desire to have their own and for that, I advised them to visit my blog where they will find the instructions. I was sure that I had included it earlier in my “Articles” for easy retrieval but since being here, I checked and found it was missing. So today, I made sure that if you simply go to my “Articles” under General headings you will find the article and the link, which will let you print a copy of to how to build an eReaderCase.
Hope you enjoy it

Work practices

9 May

During our career’s lifetime how often do we perform tasks that we learned so long ago that we forget that it might have taken us a long time to learn it. Now perhaps many years later, we do it in our sleep and forget many of the nuances of performing that task.
Some of the things that we may have learned might have been physical manipulation with our hands or our tools. Maybe it was how to hold your hands in a certain position. Maybe it’s, how to grasp a specific tool. Steps to best perform a task, safely and accurately. Maybe we forget much of the theory behind the task. Theory, that in the beginning we tortured or minds as to why we were having such difficulties. Things that in the beginning appeared almost impossible. Now that we know why, it seems second nature. When it does not work for us today, we instinctively shift the work, our grasp or simply adjust the tool or the method to compensate for the problem we are experiencing.
When we observe others, perhaps younger than ourselves, we forget that we too once upon a time had to be shown. Those that need help equally do not have to be younger for many have learned to do things on the go and perhaps somewhat adequately to get them by. We can find those as well who perform tasks with adroitness but do not understand why it works. They just know how to do it.
However with all that said the learning curve could be substantially reduced, if one understands the theory behind the task. One such task that I have encountered over the years is soldering. Therefore with hopes that those that wish a brief description of some of the theory behind soldering will Keep it Together-2 or download my article “Soldering” under my technical Category.

Lateral thinking

1 May

Well with apologizes I must say that it has been sometime since I wrote anything or should I say posted anything. It’s not that I have not been thinking but more that I felt that much of it either did not apply to a blog per say. But then what does apply to a blog? Well I suppose Anything really. I am starting to start as well that the more I write the more critical I become and the more I internally try to justify what I might say. Dare I think that these thoughts are one of a writer?….HA HA that is certainly not a term that I would ever have applied to myself. However my next question would be but why not? By definition anyone that puts words to paper or in these days to screen can by definition call himself or herself a writer.
The point I suppose that stops people from applying the term to themselves might be, “I am not a GOOD writer?”…..Many and certainly, published writers that I have followed would say that the question is unimportant. The important point is that you DO write, and with that effort you may become better than you were yesterday and certainly superior today if you do write.
Over the years I have found that the more I put pen to paper to itemize steps required to perform given tasks the easier it becomes and the more I understand things myself. I have always enjoyed a good philosophical discussions. I believe that I equally enjoy hearing what other people think although I’m sure many might argue that point….sad and disappointing if true.
Recently I got involved in one of those discussion at work which even though I thought I had the question answered long ago, caused me to re-assess my viewpoint. My analysis of that dialog can be found in my Articles above. Sound


11 Mar

Ok not a subject matter I ever care to breach because you can’t win. If you happen to disagree with a published newspaper article, on prejudice then you will likely be branded prejudiced yourself. But if you remain silent then I think prejudice wins. It is a two way street. Recently I read an article in a local community week-end paper where the reporter discussed the matter with a local pastor. He asked her if things had changed over the years and of course she indicated that very little had. Some small inroads had been achieved but no major community changes had been experienced. The article went on about some of the local injustices which had occurred in the past and quite frankly it’s all long before my time here in Nova Scotia.
I have travelled in many countries over the years and worked side by side with MANY nationalities, religions, and people of color, and with each one I was offered the same common respect as I offered them. However equally in every instant they demanded nothing from me other than respect. Working and helping peoples as equals I have no problems with.
However most articles I read, or road signs I see, or decreed holiday I hear of, are I believe for the most part a one sided cry.
They make me feel as if they are prejudiced against me. I of course am Caucasian, (oh God there it is, it’s out) but I am not prejudiced against anyone no matter how much you try and make me feel that I am. I don’t however agree with all of the propaganda. I have no special centers, or declared United Nations day, I get no special treatment from any government agency and certainly get nothing but bad publicity as an oppressor in the press.
However for me there is one glimmer of light in all of this and that is when I think back a few years when by chance I happen to channel surf and fell on a reception which Bill Cosby was speaking. I always liked Bill so I decided to listen in a little longer. The event was the 50th Anniversary commemoration of the Brown vs Topeka Board of Education Supreme Court Decision (1) (2)
Dr. Bill Cosby was one of the guest speakers. Interestingly he was subsequently severely chastised for what he said immediately following the event by some of the black communities. It became known as Bill Cosby’s Pound Cake Speech. Today if you Google the event you will find many discussions regarding what he said with most agreeing with the comments, well for the most parts. I certainly do not wish to analyze Mr. Cosby’s speech here but I do find very few references to it in public conversations or newspaper articles, or when prejudices are being declared.
For many years I have said that prejudice in the media will ALWAYS be there as long as people are treated differently. Until society starts to accept that you get (everyone) what you work for NOT for what you are given whether directly or as preferential treatment. You can never satisfy both sides of the equation’s equal sign. In mathematics you cannot transpose part of the expression from one side of the equal sign to the other, without doing the same to both sides. Prejudice is the same or at least similar. What one group receives the others also must receive. However in life there are non mathematical considerations. That consideration is one of perception. If one side perceives that someone is getting the same as they are but without the same effort put forward, then the equation will never balance.
I can stand up for social prejudice as I encounter it. I can speak up where someone might be being bullied or talked down too because of their linguistic accent or derogatory remarks because of their looks, or religious belief, but when it comes to cultural prejudice I’m afraid no matter what I say or do unless I am being subservient it will not appease them. That prejudice is cultural baggage. That prejudice, is internal to that part of the culture and themselves, and it’s a one way view. “If you do not see life or things my way it’s because you are being prejudiced against me”. It seems to me that no matter what, “I”… as a Caucasian am being blamed for things I have not done just because of MY color. In most cases the accusations by the people crying out the injustices have not been submitted to it themselves. My suitcase will never be big enough to store all that baggage.
Groups and cultures can petition any government for whatever compensation they desire but no government edict can magically evaporate prejudices. In fact the more it is catered to, the more likely the gap will widen.
In the end we must all work for what we want and only then can we truly OWN what we receive.
It is harder to crack a prejudice than an atom.

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